Egyptian expert in Hyderabad to restore mummyAugust 13th, 2009 - 3:28 pm ICT by IANS
Hyderabad, Aug 13 (IANS) An Egyptian expert has arrived to restore a mummy from the age of the pharaohs and preserved at the State Archaeological Museum here.
Tarek el Awady, director of Scientific Research in Egypt’s Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA), arrived Wednesday night on a six-day visit to restore the mummy, dating back to 2500 BC, but which is showing signs of decay now.
SCA is a part of the Egyptian ministry of culture and responsible for the conservation, protection and regulation of all antiquities and archaeological excavations in Egypt. El Awady is also the general supervisor of the Egyptian Museum, Cairo.
According to P. Chenna Reddy, director of archaeology and museums, the Egyptian expert has come to restore the mummy following a request from the state government. He will study ways of restoring the mummy, believed to be of Nasihu, daughter of the sixth Pharaoh of Egypt. She is believed to have been between 16 to 18 years when she died during pregnancy.
The 1.40 metre long mummy is one of the six in Indian museums and the only in south India.
The embalmed body, lying in an airtight enclosure, is fragmenting at the face, shoulders and around the feet. The wrapping has started to peel and the cracks are very conspicuous at several places.
According to museum officials, the linen bandage of the mummy will be replaced. The experts will also replace the existing material stuffed inside the mummy with scientifically treated cotton foam.
The department of archaeology and museums has long been seeking foreign assistance to restore the mummy, which is on display at the museum since 1930. It had earlier sought help from British Museum but the latter had turned down the request saying it could not spare its conservators for the job.
The mummy was brought to Hyderabad by Nawab Nazeer Nawaz Jung, the son-in-law of Mir Mahboob Ali Khan, the sixth Nizam of Hyderabad, around 1920. Nawaz Jung had bought it for 1,000 pounds and gifted it to Mir Osman Ali Khan, the seventh Nizam, who in turn donated it to the museum.
The museum, located in the heart of the city, was then known as Hyderabad Museum but after the merger of Hyderabad state with India, was renamed the State Archaeological Museum.
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Tags: ali khan, archaeological excavations, archaeological museum, conservation protection, conservators, egyptian ministry, egyptian museum, egyptian museum cairo, embalmed body, general supervisor, indian museums, mahboob, ministry of culture, museum officials, nawaz, nazeer, nizam of hyderabad, pharaoh of egypt, south india, supreme council of antiquities